GATLINBURG, Tenn. (WATE) — Hundreds of students gathered at the 95th Annual Future Farmers of America state convention. Agriculture is a leading industry in Tennessee and Governor Bill Lee made sure to emphasize that when speaking at the conference.
“As the number one, economic driver in Tennessee we got to have young people engaged in it to keep it moving forward in the state,” Lee said.
The organization, Future Farmers of America, offers opportunities through agriculture education programs.
“We just have to make certain that we continue to provide the environment that makes companies want to be here, people want to be here, AG producers continue to produce here,” Governor Lee said.
Dale Cochran taught agriculture in schools for years and continues to work in the industry. He believes the convention offers important information to students.
“We got a diverse group of students who take agriculture classes and they need to know where their food comes from,” Cochran said. “They need to know it comes somewhere other than their grocery’s store.”
Lee said over 4,000 students are attending the convention, a number that gives him hope for the future.
“I know how important it is not only to Tennessee but to the world that America produces the food necessary to feed the world and we are a very important part of that to this country,” Lee said.